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  1. #1
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    Help with choosing a database and learning how to use it

    I purchased CoffeeCup form builder because its PR said it was really, really simple to create and publish forms. A form builder for dummies, which I am. I was in dire need of a form for a site at which customers provide information to obtain a custom quote for the manufacturing of flags and banners. The Coffee Cup form builder builds the form by WYSIWYG and creates all the code for it and sends an auto response to the customer and a report of the form results to the business so a quote can be given. The form has an upload file section so that art work can be attached. Coffee Cup hosts the form for free as long as there are not too many submitted. It is supposed to work anywhere. Well, it will not upload .pdfs No where in its literature did it say that the form would work only on a Linux server. I was hosting it at Coffee Cup but only a set number of fee uses are allowed before you have to pay for it. But uploading pdfs was not working. After two days of support exchanges I was finally told that it would not work on a windows server, which is what I have with whois. I read the forums before purchasing and saw some people having trouble and they were told to get 777 permissions for something. When that didn't work they they were sent to the " back room"for support so no other information was made public. After Coffee Cup support told me I had to have the server set 777 permissions I asked whois suppot. They said they can't do anything because the on script I have is just to send the form results back to Coffee Cupp.

    So the miracle form builder does not work. whois cannot set any permissions anywhere because CoffeeCup has all the code on its server.

    So I need to learn what a database is and try to program it and write code, script or something. I have absolutely no idea what I am doing.

    What kind of database do I need? I fear writing a script will be well beyond my abilities, but I don't even know how a script does something with a database.

    Can anyone give me some help?

  2. #2
    SitePoint Addict
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    Hi,
    For something easy to learn and to apply, try learn PHP and MySQL.
    MySQL is an easy to use database application, and PHP works very well with it.
    There are lots of tutorials on the net about php-mysql, try search for " free php mysql course ".
    Free: Web Programming Courses HTML, CSS, Flash
    Web Programming: AJAX Course and PHP-MySQL Course video Lessons
    Good JavaScript and jQuery course for beginners

  3. #3
    padawan silver trophybronze trophy markbrown4's Avatar
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    Hi Crumbles,

    Sorry to hear you went down the wysiwyg route, you should have asked on the forums

    What types of things are you wanting to build?
    Is it just one page/script you need to make or are you wanting to build web applications professionally for many years?

    PHP and MySQL is by far the most popular option and it's pretty easy to get started.
    That's probably a good place to start, it's where I started.

    http://www.sitepoint.com/books/phpmysql5/

  4. #4
    It's all Geek to me silver trophybronze trophy
    ralph.m's Avatar
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    Hm, best to avoid Windows hosting if you can. Anyhow, perhaps you could try out Swiftmailer, or if that's over your head, WuFoo.

  5. #5
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    Thank you for the replies. I was learning html and css as I went along, but the form was such an important part of the website (it's only real reason for existence) that I chose a WYSIWYG form maker that was supposed to work anywhere. I had looked at several php tutorials for dummies but couldn't bear to try to learn that too as I groped my way through html and css. I'm going to have to leave the partially working form at CoffeeCup hosting for right now as I try to learn php and mySQL.

    None of this comes easily to me, although as html and css started sinking in I sort of enjoyed it. Behind-the-scenes on the website is a real coder's nightmare, but the site works. I was planning on cleaning it up back there next, but I have to do something about this form problem first. I will look more carefully at the recommended book.
    Thanks again for the replies.


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